Posted by Steve Lettau on Jun 15, 2022

When Canada suspended the export of potatoes to the United States from Prince Edward Island because of a fungus found in two fields, Rotarians in Ontario rallied to help farmers offset their losses. Dozens of clubs coordinated the purchase, transport, and distribution of the still-edible crops to food banks.

The Rotary Club of Bracebridge began the effort, tapping local government connections to arrange for a provincial grant of about US$9,000 to cover the acquisition and transport of 4,000 10-pound bags of potatoes from one of the growers. 

On 19 February, members of five area Rotary clubs and one Rotaract club gathered in a warehouse to offload the spuds, sort the bags, and deliver them to 14 food pantries. Some 800 miles away, at his family farm near Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island, Rick Sanderson marvels at the thoughtfulness of those who worked with him to salvage a portion of his harvest. “I just really appreciate Rotary helping us out here in the time of need,” Sanderson says.